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Method and apparatus for forming mineral fibers

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Publication number
US4302234A
US4302234A US06163255 US16325580A US4302234A US 4302234 A US4302234 A US 4302234A US 06163255 US06163255 US 06163255 US 16325580 A US16325580 A US 16325580A US 4302234 A US4302234 A US 4302234A
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Prior art keywords
fibers
discharge
conduit
primary
gas
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Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Expired - Lifetime
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US06163255
Inventor
Larry J. Guffey
William W. Schultz
Current Assignee (The listed assignees may be inaccurate. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation or warranty as to the accuracy of the list.)
Owens-Corning Fiberglas Technology Inc
Owens Corning
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Owens Corning
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    • CCHEMISTRY; METALLURGY
    • C03GLASS; MINERAL OR SLAG WOOL
    • C03BMANUFACTURE, SHAPING, OR SUPPLEMENTARY PROCESSES
    • C03B37/00Manufacture or treatment of flakes, fibres, or filaments from softened glass, minerals, or slags
    • C03B37/01Manufacture of glass fibres or filaments
    • C03B37/04Manufacture of glass fibres or filaments by using centrifugal force, e.g. spinning through radial orifices; Construction of the spinner cups therefor
    • C03B37/048Means for attenuating the spun fibres, e.g. blowers for spinner cups

Abstract

Apparatus for forming fibers of mineral material comprises a spinner for centrifuging the material into primary fibers and a plurality of blowers positioned circumferentially of the spinner to further attenuate the primary fibers into secondary fibers, where the blowers are substantially cylindrical gas discharge conduits adapted to impart swirling motion to the gas discharged therefrom.

Description

TECHNICAL FIELD

This invention pertains to forming fibers from molten mineral material, such as forming glass fibers from molten glass. In one of its more specific aspects, this invention relates to centrifuging molten mineral material to form primary fibers, and further attenuating the primary fibers into secondary fibers by the action of a flow of gases.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

A common practice in forming fibers of mineral material is to pass the material in a molten state through orifices in the peripheral wall of a centrifuge or spinner to create primary fibers. Thereafter, the primary fibers are further attenuated into a veil of secondary fibers of smaller diameter by air drag attenuation from a flow of gases discharged downwardly. It is known in the prior art that the flow of gases can have high velocity in order to increase the air drag attenuation of the primary fibers into the secondary fibers. It is also known that the air drag attenuation applied to the primary fibers by the flow of gases can be greatly increased by creating some turbulence in the flow of gases.

A problem with the fiber-forming apparatus of the prior art is that the blowers used for secondary attentuation of the primary fibers into secondary fibers consume large amounts of energy since the air flows from such prior art blowers are relatively non-turbulent and, therefore, are relatively inefficient as attenuation mechanisms. Also, the blowers of the prior art do not enable the degree of turbulence to be controlled accurately. The apparatus and method of this invention are directed towards the solution of the above problems.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

According to this invention, there is provided apparatus in which a spinner is adapted to centrifuge molten mineral material into primary fibers and in which a plurality of blowers is positioned circumferentially of the spinner to further attenuate the primary fibers into secondary fibers, where each of the blowers comprises a substantially cylindrical gas discharge conduit adapted to impart a swirling motion to gas discharged therefrom.

In one of its embodiments, vanes are mounted within the cylinders to impart the swirling motion to the gas.

In another of its embodiments, the vanes are mounted for rotation about the longitudinal axes of the conduits, and means for rotating the vanes are provided.

In another of its embodiments, means for controlling the pitch of the vanes are provided.

In another of its embodiments, the interior surfaces of the conduits are adapted with helical grooves to impart the swirling motions to the gas.

In another of its embodiments, the conduits are mounted for rotation about their longitudinal axes.

DESCRIPTION OF DRAWINGS

The invention will be more easily understood if explained in conjunction with the attached drawings in which:

FIG. 1 is an elevational view of fiber-forming apparatus according to the principles of this invention.

FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the spinner and blowers shown in FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 is a cross section elevational view of a gas discharge conduit according to the invention.

FIGS. 4, 5 and 6 are modifications of the gas discharge conduit shown in FIG. 3, these modifications illustrating the configuration of various means for imparting the swirling motion to the gas discharged from the gas discharge conduits.

DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

As shown in FIG. 1, spinner 10 is mounted for rotation on quill 12, and can be comprised of spinner bottom wall 14 and orificed peripheral wall 16. Molten glass stream 18 drops into the bottom of the spinner and flows outwardly and upwardly to the spinner peripheral wall through which it passes to form primary fibers 20. The primary fibers can have a diameter within the range of from about 15 to about 25 microns, although the principles of the invention will apply for primary fibers having greater or lesser diameters. The primary fibers can be maintained in a plastic, attenuable condition by the heat supplied from annular burner 22.

The primary fibers are further attenuated into secondary fibers 24 by the air drag of swirling gases 26 discharged from gas discharge conduits 28. As can be seen in FIG. 2, the gas discharge conduits can be supplied with a gas, such as air by annular manifold 30, which can itself be supplied from a source, not shown, via feeder duct 32.

Referring now to FIG. 3, vanes 34 are shown positioned within the discharge conduit. The vanes are mounted at angles to longitudinal axis 36 of the conduit, and impart the swirling motion to the air passed through the discharge conduit, thereby producing the swirling gases for air drag attenuation. As shown, the vanes can be mounted with any suitable adjustment mechanism, such as rod 38, for controlling the pitch of the vanes. By controlling the pitch of the vanes, the degree of swirl or turbulence of the gases discharged can be controlled.

Referring now to FIG. 4, it is shown that the vanes can be mounted for rotation within the discharge conduit on shaft 40, which is coincident with the longitudinal axis of the conduit. The shaft and the vanes can be driven by any suitable means, such as gear 42 mounted on the shaft and driven by an annular gear wheel, not shown. The rotation of the vanes acts like a propeller in driving air through the conduit and discharging the air in a swirling, turbulent condition for air drag attenuation of the glass fibers. The amount of swirl imparted to the air passing through the discharge conduit can be controlled by controlling the speed of rotation of the vanes.

Referring now to FIG. 5, there is shown a discharge conduit containing helical grooves 44 on its inner surface. In this embodiment, air passing through the discharge conduit is given a swirling motion as it flows along the grooves to produce the swirling gases for air drag attenuation.

Referring now to FIG. 6, there is shown the discharge conduit rotatably mounted from the manifold on bearings 46. The discharge conduit can be rotated about its longitudinal axis by any suitable means such as gear 48 driven by a suitable drive wheel, not shown. The rotation of the discharge conduit imparts a swirling motion to the air passing through the discharge conduit. The amount of swirling imparted to the air can be controlled by controlling the speed of rotation of the discharge conduit. The interior of the discharge conduit can be adapted with vanes 50 which can be mounted to facilitate the swirling of the air passing through the discharge conduit.

It is to be understood that individual elements of the various embodiments of the invention can be combined for greater control of the degree of turbulence of the gases discharged from the discharge conduits.

EXPLOITATION IN INDUSTRY

This invention will be found to be useful in the formation of fibers from molten glass for such uses as glass fiber thermal insulation products and glass fiber acoustical insulation products.

Claims (6)

We claim:
1. Apparatus of the type in which a spinner is adapted to centrifuge molten mineral material through the orificed spinner peripheral wall into primary fibers and a plurality of blowers is positioned circumferentially of said spinner to further attentuate said primary fibers into secondary fibers, the improvement being each of said blowers comprising a substantially cylindrical gas discharge conduit having means positioned therein to impart a swirling motion to gas discharged therefrom.
2. The apparatus of claim 1 in which said means comprises a plurality of vanes mounted within said conduits to impart said swirling motion to said gas.
3. The apparatus of claim 2 in which said vanes are mounted for rotation about the longitudinal axes of said conduits, and further comprising means for rotating said vanes.
4. The apparatus of claims 2 or 3 comprising means for controlling the pitch of said vanes.
5. The apparatus of claim 1 in which said means comprises helical grooves positioned on the interior surfaces of said conduits to impart said swirling motion to said gas.
6. Apparatus of the type in which a spinner is adapted to centrifuge molten mineral material through the orificed spinner peripheral wall into primary fibers and a plurality of blowers is positioned circumferentially of said spinner to further attenuate said primary fibers into secondary fibers, the improvement being each of said blowers comprising a substantially cylindrical gas discharge conduit which is mounted for rotation about its longitudinal axis to impart a swirling motion to gas discharged therefrom.
US06163255 1980-06-26 1980-06-26 Method and apparatus for forming mineral fibers Expired - Lifetime US4302234A (en)

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Cited By (4)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US4544393A (en) * 1984-05-22 1985-10-01 Owens-Corning Fiberglas Corporation Rotary fiber forming method and apparatus
EP0519797A1 (en) * 1991-06-20 1992-12-23 Isover Saint-Gobain Method and apparatus for making fibers
US5326241A (en) * 1991-04-25 1994-07-05 Schuller International, Inc. Apparatus for producing organic fibers
US5688302A (en) * 1995-07-12 1997-11-18 Owens-Corning Fiberglas Technology Inc. Centrifuging process for forming fibers

Citations (5)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US2199309A (en) * 1939-04-20 1940-04-30 Herman O Freudenberg Spinning bowl
US3215514A (en) * 1955-02-28 1965-11-02 Saint Gobain Method of and apparatus for producing fibers from thermoplastic material
US3928009A (en) * 1972-03-02 1975-12-23 Walter Merton Perry Rotary forming unit for fine mineral fibers
US4105425A (en) * 1975-09-01 1978-08-08 Rockwool International A/S Apparatus for manufacture of mineral wool
US4119421A (en) * 1976-06-30 1978-10-10 Rockwool Aktiebolaget Arrangement for fibration of molten mineral

Patent Citations (5)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US2199309A (en) * 1939-04-20 1940-04-30 Herman O Freudenberg Spinning bowl
US3215514A (en) * 1955-02-28 1965-11-02 Saint Gobain Method of and apparatus for producing fibers from thermoplastic material
US3928009A (en) * 1972-03-02 1975-12-23 Walter Merton Perry Rotary forming unit for fine mineral fibers
US4105425A (en) * 1975-09-01 1978-08-08 Rockwool International A/S Apparatus for manufacture of mineral wool
US4119421A (en) * 1976-06-30 1978-10-10 Rockwool Aktiebolaget Arrangement for fibration of molten mineral

Cited By (6)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US4544393A (en) * 1984-05-22 1985-10-01 Owens-Corning Fiberglas Corporation Rotary fiber forming method and apparatus
US5326241A (en) * 1991-04-25 1994-07-05 Schuller International, Inc. Apparatus for producing organic fibers
EP0519797A1 (en) * 1991-06-20 1992-12-23 Isover Saint-Gobain Method and apparatus for making fibers
FR2677973A1 (en) * 1991-06-20 1992-12-24 Saint Gobain Isover Method and fiber forming device.
US5277706A (en) * 1991-06-20 1994-01-11 Isover Saint-Gobain Method of and an apparatus for forming fibres
US5688302A (en) * 1995-07-12 1997-11-18 Owens-Corning Fiberglas Technology Inc. Centrifuging process for forming fibers

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AS Assignment

Owner name: OWENS-CORNING FIBERGLAS CORPORATION, A CORP. OF DE

Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST.;ASSIGNORS:GUFFEY LARRY J.;SCHULTZ WILLIAM W.;REEL/FRAME:003859/0936;SIGNING DATES FROM 19800611 TO 19800619

AS Assignment

Owner name: WILMINGTON TRUST COMPANY, ONE RODNEY SQUARE NORTH,

Free format text: SECURITY INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:OWENS-CORNING FIBERGLAS CORPORATION;REEL/FRAME:004652/0351

Effective date: 19861103

Owner name: WADE, WILLIAM, J., ONE RODNEY SQUARE NORTH, WILMIN

Free format text: SECURITY INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:OWENS-CORNING FIBERGLAS CORPORATION;REEL/FRAME:004652/0351

Effective date: 19861103

Owner name: WILMINGTON TRUST COMPANY, DELAWARE

Free format text: SECURITY INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:OWENS-CORNING FIBERGLAS CORPORATION;REEL/FRAME:004652/0351

Effective date: 19861103

Owner name: WADE, WILLIAM, J., DELAWARE

Free format text: SECURITY INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:OWENS-CORNING FIBERGLAS CORPORATION;REEL/FRAME:004652/0351

Effective date: 19861103

AS Assignment

Owner name: OWENS-CORNING FIBERGLAS CORPORATION, FIBERGLAS TOW

Free format text: TERMINATION OF SECURITY AGREEMENT RECORDED NOV. 13, 1986. REEL 4652 FRAMES 351-420;ASSIGNORS:WILMINGTON TRUST COMPANY, A DE. BANKING CORPORATION;WADE, WILLIAM J. (TRUSTEES);REEL/FRAME:004903/0501

Effective date: 19870730

Owner name: OWENS-CORNING FIBERGLAS CORPORATION, A CORP. OF DE

Free format text: TERMINATION OF SECURITY AGREEMENT RECORDED NOV. 13, 1986. REEL 4652 FRAMES 351-420;ASSIGNORS:WILMINGTON TRUST COMPANY, A DE. BANKING CORPORATION;WADE, WILLIAM J. (TRUSTEES);REEL/FRAME:004903/0501

Effective date: 19870730

AS Assignment

Owner name: OWENS-CORNING FIBERGLAS TECHNOLOGY INC., ILLINOIS

Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST.;ASSIGNOR:OWENS-CORNING FIBERGLAS CORPORATION, A CORP. OF DE;REEL/FRAME:006041/0175

Effective date: 19911205